Gone are the days when travelling in a foreign country meant fumbling with guidebooks or maps. These days, smartphones make travel planning and navigation oh so easy.
Here are the five best mobile apps you should never travel without.
When you’re shopping overseas, having to constantly convert currencies in your head can get confusing and also lead to some nasty surprises when you realize that item you thought was a steal is nowhere near as affordable as you thought… after you’ve paid for it.
With XE Currency, a currency converter app for iPhone and Android, instantly convert currencies on the go so you never have to wonder how much that item REALLY costs ever again. You can also use the app offline if you don’t have an internet connection.
Google Translate can be a lifesaver if you’re traveling to a country where you don’t speak the local language, and where the locals don’t speak much English. Urgently need to say something? Simply select the languages you wish to translate to and from, type in what you want to say and click the translate button.
The minute you enter a cafe, the first thing you’re likely to do is to whip out your phone and try to connect to wifi.
With WiFi Map for iPhone and Android, you’ll be able to find free wifi hotspots around you with passwords thanks to crowdsourced information. This can be a lifesaver if you desperately need to book accommodation or contact your Airbnb host.
Grab may no longer offer to be able to save you much money vis a vis taxis in Singapore, but Uber still operates in many developed countries where taxi rides are very expensive. It is, of course, available on both iPhone and Android.
For instance, hiring an Uber in Melbourne, Paris or Amsterdam is much more affordable than getting a taxi, and can help you avoid having to struggle with your luggage on public transport.
So, should you also download Grab, assuming you don’t already use it in Singapore? Well, as Grab operates mainly in Southeast Asian countries where taxis are already very affordable, we’ll stick with Uber as a travel essential.
Having offline maps on your phone is now essential when you travel. It’s much easier to figure out where you are using your GPS than it is to struggle with an actual paper map.
Maps.me is one of the best map apps for navigation purposes. You can download the cities or areas you’ll need ahead of time if you do not have access to mobile data. You can also bookmark locations using the app, which is available on both iPhone and Android.
So, why would use Maps.me instead of Google Maps? Well, the app compresses data more efficiently, which means your maps get displayed more quickly. You can also get walking directions even without an Internet connection, which you can’t do with Google Maps.
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